Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Knit Tight by Annabeth Albert Review, blog tour, and giveaway


Welcome to the party for Annabeth Albert's new novella, Knit Tight, the latest story in the Portland Heat collection. We have goodies from the author, and some opinions from me. Very happy opinions, I might add.


Knit Tight 

(Portland Heat Series, #4)

by Annabeth Albert


It’s no secret that Portland, Oregon, has some of best restaurants, shops, and caf├ęs in the country. But it’s the hard-working men who serve it all up that keep us coming back for more...

One of Portland’s hottest young baristas, Brady is famous for his java-topping flair, turning a regular cup of joe into a work of art. Every Wednesday—aka “Knit Night”—hordes of women and their needles descend on the coffeehouse, and Brady’s feeling the heat. Into the fray walks a tall, dark, and distractingly handsome stranger from New York. His name is Evren, and he’s the sexy nephew of Brady’s sweetest customer, the owner of the yarn shop down the street. He’s also got a killer smile, confident air, and masculine charm that’s tying Brady’s stomach in knots. The smitten barista can’t wait to see him at the next week’s gathering. But when he tries to ask Evren out, his plans unravel faster than an unfinished edge. If Brady hopes to warm up more than Evren’s coffee, he’ll have to find a way to untangle their feelings, get out of the friend zone, and form a close-knit bond that’s bound to last a lifetime…


Review:

How am I coming in so late on this series! Must.Read.Them.All!

Here we have a talented barista raising his younger siblings after their parents died. Brady’s twenty-three, overwhelmed, and trying to make his family function in spite of considerable challenges. Time enough for a relationship is tough to come by: he’s lucky if his eighteen year old sister doesn’t flake out on being the designated adult for the evening if he’s working.


Evren overlaps a little with work hours, especially when he comes in for a themed evening at the coffee shop, where he quickly becomes the apple of everyone’s eye, including Brady’s. His Turkish background makes him exotic, his knitting skills are his livelihood, and his particular interests make him both very exciting and nearly impossible for Brady to hit his radar. He’s come to Portland to care for the ailing aunt who helped raise him.

We get a long, slow burn, because both men’s life situations have made free time a rare commodity. Friendship looks like a better bet, because Brady comes with what Evren considers a deal breaker: he’s bisexual. Evren has some bad experiences to reinforce some negative stereotypes, making Brady wonder if he can ever convince Ev he’s a good choice for a partner. 

For everyone who's been clamoring for bisexual books without erasure, here's your story. For those who say Ew! We only love the bi guys without encountering ladybits, this is your story too. This is in no way contrived, it's very organic to what's going on, and Brady is hiding nothing.

We get Brady’s POV for most of the book, which is fine: he’s a colorful character and very bright on the page. Evren’s POV comes through in snippets of his knitting blog posts, heavy with subtexts. It’s a clever take on alternating POVs and the effect is charming, letting us see Evren’s mind changing, event by event. He still advises putting a ring on the boyfriend before knitting him a sweater.

I ended up loving both these guys, and breaking my heart as theirs did, both with each other and with their home situations. The romance is lovely and heartrending all at once, and slow, while trust grows. If you require lots of ass-pounding in your story, look elsewhere, but I found the intensely emotional and everything-but sex scenes to be wonderfully refreshing.

This story will run you through every emotion you have, leaving you with a sigh of satisfaction for love fulfilled with happiness. 5 marbles





Available for purchase at 

            





Excerpt (a naughty one)

 “Why? Am I turning you on?” My hand wandered over my fly. Not stroking, just firm pressure. We’d danced past sexy talk, far out of the friend zone, now meandering into something dark and heady. I pressed hard against my aching erection as I waited to see how far Ev would let himself go.
 “Perhaps. I told you some things, now you tell me. What is your favorite thing?”
 “Uh. The long, slow grinding ending in oral that you just described sounds amazing and hits a lot of my buttons. For the record, I’m totally good with…mess. And I like giving oral. Love getting my throat fucked. Being pinned down while grinding or getting my throat fucked, that gets me going.”
 Ev was silent a long moment. Perhaps I’d pushed him too far. “Tell me about this throat fucking. How do you like it?”
 Aw yes. I’d never had phone sex, but I had a feeling we were about to head in that direction. “Where are you right now?”
 “In my bed. With a closed door. Are you going to ask me what I’m wearing next?”
 “Knitted underwear?” I laughed as I headed for the bathroom—the one room with a lock. My usual jerk-off method was a locked door and a longer-than-necessary shower.
 “Sorry to disappoint. Pajama bottoms. I worry Hala Mira could need me in the night.”
 “Hey, you don’t have to apologize to me. I share a room with a ten-year-old. I’m going to the bathroom now, though. And locking the door.”
 “You require a locked door to tell me about giving head?”
 “I require a locked door, a quiet house, and about three hours to show you,” I countered. “Fuck, Ev. I want you to wear me out.”
 “Oh, I could. Do not doubt that, Brady. You want me to wear your throat out? Use you so much you need me to feed you some gelato after?”
 “Fuck yes,” I whispered. “I’d like it if you were on the bed or in a chair and I were kneeling in front of you. Or you were standing in front of me. Me on my knees is the key thing.”
 “You ever try with your head over the edge of the mattress? It happens that this bed is the perfect height for that…”
“Oh yes. Tell me more. I want to jerk off while you fuck my throat like that.”
 “Ah. But I don’t want that. Perhaps we will need to find other occupation for your hands.”
 Oh man. Ev knew how to turn my crank big-time. “I’m good with having my hands tied.”
 I could tell from his inhalation that it worked for him, too. “How flexible are you?”
 “Bendier than I look. I had to do yoga stretching exercises to rehab a skateboarding injury. Turns out I dig it.”
 “Nice. Very nice. I like your mouth very, very much.”
 “Like the beard? Because if you want my mouth more…exposed, I can work with that. Beard is pure Northwest laziness on my part.”
 “The beard is…part of the appeal. Your mouth is very full and your beard always seems like it’s…teasing. I think I want your hair down, though, yes?”
 “Go for it.” Getting into it, I pulled my hair free of the ponytail, let it flop against my shoulders. Spit gathered in my mouth like I really was about to get a go at Ev’s cock. Fuck. Just the thought had me throbbing. I unzipped to get a little more breathing room. “I want to—”
 Knock. Knock. Knock. “Brady, are you in there? I don’t feel so good,” Jonas called through the door.
 Fuck. I kept my curse to myself. “Just a minute, buddy,” I called.
 “You need to go?” Ev said in my ear. “I understand.”
 “Yeah, I’m sorry.”
 “Another time, Brady, another time.”






The Portland Heat Series






About The Author



Annabeth Albert grew up sneaking romance novels under the bed covers. Now, she devours all subgenres of romance out in the open—no flashlights required! When she’s not adding to her keeper shelf, she’s a multi-published Pacific Northwest romance writer.

Emotionally complex, sexy, and funny stories are her favorites both to read and to write. Annabeth loves finding happy endings for a variety of pairings and is a passionate gay rights supporter.  In between searching out dark heroes to redeem, she works a rewarding day job and wrangles two children.



You can find Annabeth at 

            


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